Among the best things to do, without a doubt, is to join a hiking tour of Meteora. Even more so, in the Springtime when nature is at its best the most ideal time to hike at Meteora. It would be a pity to travel halfway around the globe to visit one of the most beautiful and spectacular World Heritage Sites of this world only to experience most of it behind your car windshield.
Spring and Autumn are probably the best seasons in Greece in terms of mild temperatures and the colorful nature for visitors to engage in outside activities. Below we give 10 good reasons as to why you should consider joining the Meteora Hiking tour in case you ever visit Meteora:
1. Enjoy mesmerizing sceneries away from the beaten tourist paths
There are times especially during the high season when the parking lots outside of monasteries are filled with cars, buses, and big crowds. Leave your car behind and get away from the noisy masses to discover the peace, the quiet, and the beautiful trails in the hidden side of Meteora. Walk among the giant cliffs in what many describe as a “forest of rock pillars”. The hike’s quite easy, with a total length of 6km, most of it under the shade that makes it suitable for all ages. The hike has an elevation difference from start to end of roughly 250 meters.
2. Have the chance to visit Ypapanti, a hidden monastery of Meteora
One of the best reasons as to why to join the hiking tour is the chance to visit the monastery of Ypapanti. The monastery ranks among the oldest monasteries of Meteora and was recently renovated. It remains open during the high season for visitors, between May and October 10:00 to 14:00. It’s a true hidden gem of our place, and it’s accessible only on foot! Not to mention that you don’t have to pay an entrance fee…
3. See and experience things you won’t otherwise
There are many viewpoints and spots you can reach by car, but there is so much more to see if you decide to walk! We always advise people who wish to visit Meteora that the best way to experience this awesome site is by walking. Take the chance to discover many hidden gems and viewpoints accessible only on foot nobody except the locals know.
4. Learn about the flora and fauna of the area
Did you know that Greece’s indigenous plants are about 6,600, and it is estimated that they make up for 50% of the entire European Union? For example, in the UK there are only 800 species thriving. Greece is actually third in worldwide rankings, in terms of endemic plants, when taking into account her geographical size. About 1,600 out of the 6,600 are aromatic and medicinal plants. The region of Meteora ranks among the richest places around Greece in terms of indigenous plants and rare herbs.
5. Test theory of relativity
The pace of our everyday life worldwide probably is best described in two words: fast and furious! With the hiking tour, you’ll have the chance to hit the brakes and lower gears. Whenever you choose to walk you take your time to do and experience things. Everything around seems to slow down, even time itself so, you’ll have the chance to enjoy yourself much more. To paraphrase Einstein’s theory of relativity the experiences of things you observe and absorb are always relative to the speed you move through space and time.
6. Have the chance to make the most amazing pictures
If you like to visit a place and make the best pictures ever this tour is definitely the best for you. The site of Meteora ranks among the best photogenic sites around the world and if you combine your visit with the hiking tour rest assured that you’ve made the best combo to ensure that you are going to have the most spectacular pictures ever!
7. Make new friends
One of the best tours to make friends along the way is by joining the hiking tour of Meteora. The small size groups and the slow pace makes it ideal to meet interesting people from all over the world. We‘ve seen time and again people who join this particular tour to become friends with one another, share pictures, or have a drink together at the end. We ve even seen a marriage proposition taking place on the tour, so, be prepared for everything!
8. Discover the ancient trails of the monks
The roads within the site are a relatively new addition compared to the centuries-old monasteries. The modern network of roads people use today was made in 1948. Before that year and for the previous 7 centuries the monks, the pilgrims, and the locals had to use a dense network of trails part of which survived to this day. These are the same trails the guides will lead through in this activity.
9. Keep fit and have fun
Greek food is simply delicious! We know it’s not always easy to resist such a huge temptation. If you had tones of pitta gyros with tzatziki the previous night and you are now thousands of miles away from your gym, keep calm and have fun! This tour will be your chance to redeem yourself!
10. Listen to the local legends and stories from our exceptional guides
Our guides are all local young people who grew up in the area so, they know everything like the back of their heads! They are all passionate about their work and particularly of the site, they call home! They didn’t just learn the history to tell the visitors, they grew up with all the local legends as their bedtime stories. And these stories played an important role in who they are today!
Making a day trip to the UNESCO-listed monasteries of Meteora from Thessaloniki can be difficult without a self-drive car. This full-day tour eliminates transport stresses: taking you direct to the medieval rock-pinnacle monasteries by comfortable air-conditioned minivan or coach, and with a guide to explain the monasteries’ construction, art, and history. On arrival, tour two of the six retreats and enjoy lunch (own expense) in nearby Kalampaka before your return. Spare yourself the risks of Greek roads and the expense of car hire on this comprehensive small-group tour of Meteora’s religious monuments. Soak up the sunset over this dramatic landscape; see all six monasteries and visit the interior of one or two; admire the Byzantine Church of the Assumption of Virgin Mary in Kalabaka and 1,000-year-old cave hermitages. Tour includes transport and guiding: entrance fees are at your own expense.